6 Surprising North London Spots

Written by: Violet Myers

Don’t get us wrong, we love this city, we think it’s pretty ruddy fabulous to be honest, but the average London street can fall into the same dull pattern; newsagents, Chicken Cottage, newsagents, hairdresser, Chicken Cottage. Is it just us or is there a glitch in the Matrix? 
That’s why we’re so excited to see these surprising spots in North London, from the ‘eh?’ to the ‘what the?!”

Atsuko Kudo – Designer Latex Fetish Fashion

Holloway Road, N7 8JL

Up the street from pun-tastic Piebury Corner and sandwiched between tired looking estate agents lies North London’s kinkiest little secret. 
Selling high-end latex fashion, from mini dresses to eye patches, Atsuko Kudo caters to every fantasy, as long as it’s tight, shiny and you need a quart of talcum powder to get into it. Despite its modest surroundings the shop is constantly making headlines, boasting celebrity fans such as Daisy Lowe, Taylor Swift, Rita Ora and Kim Kardashian. Kim K’s famous behind was photographed recently testing the limits of a pair of Atsuko Kudo’s latex leggings.

The Loading Bar – Gaming Bar
Stoke Newington Road, N16 8BX

So you’re half way through an eight hour C.O.D marathon, when you realise all that shouting abuse at newbs has left you rather parched. You’re in no mood for Ribena and a beer just won’t cut it, if only you had access to a bespoke, themed cocktail menu. Enter The Loading Bar, a venue packed with games of every genre, including an impressive collection of board games. The menu includes cocktails paying homage to everyone’s favourite games from the Earthworm Gin, Kicked to the Kirby, Assassin’s Meade and Skyrum.

Basement Gallery – Underground Supper Club
South Access Road, Walthamstow

What’s the nicest thing you’ve eaten on the tube? A sneaky mid-morning pack of Hula Hoops? A sad BLT you bought in a hurry at the station? How about a barley, lentil & mushroom ragout with griddled lamb neck and toasted brioche? Really blows those Hula Hoops out of the water, right?
 The Basement presents Underground Dining, a chance to enjoy a three course meal in a tarted up tube carriage. Menus are inspired by French and Scandinavian cuisine and prices start at £45 per person, we wonder if we get a discount with a railcard?

Cyberdog – Futuristic Rave Fashion
Chalk Farm Rd,  NW1 8AH

Any Camden locals will be well aware of this flashy shop, which is peculiarly popular among tourists. The shop stocks all of your raving needs, from silver hot pants, light up shoes, little fish, big fish and a selection of cardboard boxes. But what really makes Cyberdog surprising is the shop itself, the two story building is decked out like the set of Fifth Element, has pulsating lights, pumping music and dancing shop assistants.

Photos: Nikoreto

North by Northwest Pub – Alfred Hitchcock Themed Pub
New North Road, N1 7BJ

So he may not have been the fittest director to devote your walls to, but no one could deny old Hitch was an icon. Inside this humble pub lies a shrine most fitting to the master of suspense, with floors to ceilings decked out with portraits, stuffed birds, low flying aeroplanes and quotes by the late auteur. The pub is also equipped for table tennis, well if there’s one thing Hitch knew it was ping pong.

Jacksons Lane – Contemporary Circus Venue
Archway Road, N6 5AA

A North London theatre and performance venue offering some of the most weird and wonderful circus shows on offer. We’re talking freaky, bendy, flying around the room craziness, call your mother and tell her you won’t be home for tea, you’re running away with the circus.

All circus images: Paul Rider

Mento, floristry cafe in finsbury park, North London
Eat & Drink

Mento: Flowers and Coffee

Next time you need a caffeine hit why not take it from a cup brewed from Jamaican beans grown under a canopy of rainforest-preserving trees, whilst eating a home made vegan banana bread as you sit among an array of sweetly scented blooms. Welcome to Mento, Finsbury Park.

Regional Spanish tasting menu at Pilgrim, a new pop-up supper club in Hackney, North Four Magazine
Eat & Drink

Pilgrim: A Unique Spanish Pop-up Dining Experience

Pilgrim, the newest kid to Hackney's pop-up scene, is a unique dining experience inspired by the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage. This six course tasting menu includes regional dishes with a contemporary twist not yet seen before in London.

Amelia Donkor as Rose standing in shadow behind Ian McDiarmid as Enoch Powell holding speech at Park Theatre

Theatre: What Shadows

Recent times have seen an unnerving surge in right-wing politics. President Trump’s campaign to ‘make America great again’ saw him make the audacious promise to ‘build a wall’. France saw the uneasy ascent of Marine Le Pen’s National Front in its general elections and Germany’s AfD, (the first openly nationalist party in almost six decades) celebrated an unprecedented third place victory in its recent elections.

Dog being petted, North Four magazine

Dogtober Doggy Brunch at The Narrowboat

Bark bark bark. Bark! Woof! Yep, you heard it straight from the dog’s mouth. Dogtober (definitely a real thing) is in full swing and The Narrowboat is hosting their annual Doggy Brunch next Saturday 21st October. Bone Appétit!

Eat & Drink Events

Magic Roundabout's Retro Winter Wonderland

Summer is officially over. We're not sure it ever began in the first place. I guess that's one of the few downsides of living in London (other than crippling debt, tube strikes and Boris Johnson), but I digress... Magic Roundabout Old Street is raising the bar for winter, transforming the site into a tented, heated, 'Decades' inspired wonderland.

Slow roasted lamb shank shawarma at Fat Macy's supper club in The Luminary Bakery, Stoke Newington
Culture Eat & Drink Events

Fat Macy's Middle Eastern Feast

Guess who’s back, back again. Fat Macy’s back, tell a friend. No, really. Tell everyone about it. Fat Macy's supper club came back into our lives and this time around they had their Middle Eastern Feast on at the cute as a button Luminary Bakery in Stoke Newington, with a menu inspired by Ottolenghi and the #CookForSyria campaign.

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Eat & Drink Events

We Spent the Night in Alcotraz

Getting shouted at by a burly prison guard with a buzz cut and an offensively loud American accent isn't usually the way one wishes to begin one's night. Nevertheless, as I clamber into a very large (cheers guys) orange jumpsuit, the guard shoves a bottle of Conkers Gin wrapped in a thin towel (no fluffy Egyptian cotton here lads), into my now somewhat clammy hands. Whispering hastily at me to not get caught by the warden I'm ushered off in single file into the depths of Alcotraz.

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Culture Events

New Beacon Books Mini Market

If you haven’t heard the news yet, the world’s first black bookshop is back. Yes, after months of campaigning for funding and volunteers, New Beacon Books has reopened after threat of closure with a brand new refurb to boot. Established in 1966 by John La Rose and Sarah White, New Beacon Books is the UKs longest running independent bookshop specialising in African-Caribbean literature, cards and artwork.

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Eat & Drink

Top Four “Hold My Phone I'm Going In” Cocktails

London cocktail week is upon us. To be honest I can think of nothing worse than strapping on a wristband, carrying around a guidebook and queuing up for something that just needs to be brought to my sorry, tired old lips immediately. Apparently this year however, Drink Up London have released an app that eliminates all of the above nonsense. Get your ticket, download the app and get enjoying your £6 cocktails all week long. Just remember to flash your digital pass to the bartender first.

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Culture Events

Music: The Psychotic Monks London Debut

Garage and psych rock fans rejoice - The Psychotic Monks are stopping off in Camden tonight as part of their European tour. Roughly translated from French (GCSE stylee merci very much), the psych rockers describe themselves as “noise, fury, music impregnated .. with life impulses” finding a balance between “neurotic madness and contemplative melancholy”.

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Eat & Drink

Bubble Tea and Banging Teriyaki Chicken in Finsbury Park

A bubble tea place in Finsbury Park? That also does a bangin’ teriyaki chicken rice box? Uh, hell yeah. This little gem quietly opened up last March on Wells Terrace. Y’know the spot where folks bumble off the most crowded bus in the entirety of London and damn near break a hip scampering for the tube round the corner? Yeah, that little pocket of Finsbury Park.

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Londoners: Are We Proud or Ashamed?

According to a recent Provident Personal Credit survey Londoners still remain at the bottom of the friendliness scale scoring just 6.44 out of 10. Begging the question, how could anyone be possibly proud to be a Londoner? A city where its inhabitants revel in their ability to remain as cynical and isolated from the outside world as possible. A shallow group of people who are far more interested in Instagramming their brunch then saving money to buy houses or giving back to the community.

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Conference: Raising Awareness for Mental Illness in Young Men

A series of talks taking place this November shines a necessary light on mental illness in boys and young men. Speakers will gather at Finsbury Park’s Arts and Media School to raise awareness and help advise on a variety of topics including substance misuse, eating disorders and suicide.

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Eat & Drink Lifestyle

My First Night at Green Rooms Hotel

Staying in a hotel one mile from where you actually live feels strange enough, but doing it on your own is even stranger. These photos are a visual record of me wandering the lonely corridors of a new boutique hotel between the hours of 10-12pm. I would describe the decor as handmade but not cheap, minimal but not clinical. It has the feeling that money has been spent on the things that matter.

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Eat & Drink

You Feta Brie-lieve it: Cheese Festival Comes to North London

The rumours are true: a cheese festival exists and it’s coming to North London. This Sunday. Be there or be … cheese-less I suppose. But you’ve gouda get there early:  If you’re as keen as brie and one of the first fifty fromage fondlers to show, you’re in the running for a free bottle of Black Cow’s pure milk vodka. Traders will be setting up stalls along Islington’s Chapel Market: from the Raclette Brothers and Mac to the Future to La Fromagerie and The Cheese Truck.

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Culture Lifestyle

Dream Talk: Sound Art for Your Commute

Dream Talk. It’s like Dream Phone, but not at all. Artist Emma Alonze and musician Andy Becker have joined forces to collaborate on a (possibly prophetic) new sound art project. Londoners are invited to take a moment out of their daily commute, routine or journey and immerse themselves in a narrated collection of dreams. Taking three years worth of forty winks, Alonze has gathered and narrated a chosen few to be set to an ambient soundtrack by Becker.